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Recently I've been working a self-massage routine every morning to help resolve a carpal tunnel syndrome problem that I've been having for awhile. It's inspired by what I've been reading about myofascial release and it's been relieving a lot of compression, especially in the pectoralis major and minor muscles, resetting a chronic internal rotation of the shoulders that has went along with a forward-inclined head... I work out from the sternum and over into the arm, down across the scalenes, and now I've started working the entirety of the arms as well, which has helped relieve a lot of excess, constant tension that is usually there.

Something unexpected that I've found is that my triceps muscles, especially the long head, are very painful when I sink into them, probably the most pain I've found in a muscle since I started working the scalenes a long time ago (very painful trigger points that are now gone).

I've been speculating as to why this would be, but I was wondering if anyone else has seen this before and would also speculate as to what would cause this (what kind of postural issues or usage issues would provoke this). I'm looking for input in this sense 'cause I want to test my intuition about why this would be. I'd also add that it's not massage-related as I've probably done maybe two hours of massage combined in the past month.

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One arm or both arms?

Both arms, to pretty much the same degree of pain.

Also, the pain amplifies itself considerably when I do the massage with the forearm extended. I don't feel any ache there in the slightest unless I'm actually touching the muscle...

Hmm, well its even.  Its in both arms..Hmm?  And it does hurt when you massage?  Or they only hurt when touched?

I only notice pain in them when I'm working on massaging them, which I'm doing as part of massaging the entire arm. I'll have areas, like in the forearm near the elbow, posterior-lateral and anterior-medial, but it's nothing compared to the ache in the triceps.

Ok.. Uhm....Well I don't know?  Obviously you are straining your triceps somehow?  But its even, not one sided.. So you are not that out of balance.   During your self massage I would try this as part of your self therapy.   With about 10% of your strength I would isometrically contract your bicepts..Have your elbow bent a little bit.  Expiriment with the angle.  And at the same time with your other hand , karate chop the tendons of your bicept.  Do that for about 20 seconds, rest five seconds ,then repeat up to maybe seven times.  You want to stress the bicepts in order to initiate the reciprocal inhibition reflex that will make those sore tricepts lengthen to their maximum resting length.  Its a way to relax that muscle without digging in and causing colateral damage.  At any rate.  Keep working on them.. And like your scalenes, you will eventually fix them. Experiment.  Learn... You may run into a client with very sore tricepts some day.

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